Reverse osmosis in water treatment

Potluri, Neetu; Rao, S. Sumitra
January 2006
Chemical Business;Jan2006, Vol. 20 Issue 1, p41
Trade Publication
The efficiency and quality of Reverse Osmosis(RO) operations is often dependent on the thoroughness of membrane cleaning procedures and the effectiveness of system pretreatment The earliest forms of membrane cleaners and preventative maintenance chemicals such as citric acid, caustic potash, and sodium hexamataphosphate provided some relief from incessant membrane fouling. Ironically, these generic materials, in many cases, contributed to membrane fouling or merely gave the short-lived illusion of solving the operator's fouling problem. Today, the generic materials of the 1960's are used with little consideration of their inherent side-effects and the risks to successful long-term RO operations. The complexities of membrane fouling and the potential adverse effects of generic materials must be considered by RO operations personnel. With a practical knowledge of the chemical and physical interactions between water constituents, foulants, and chemical additives operators may avoid further complicating an existing foulant problem. Supplementing this practical knowledge with a basic understanding of why properly designed RO chemicals are preferable to generics will enable operating personnel to select treatments which are more appropriate and more effective for their specific RO operating conditions.


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